OTTAWA — Foreign Affairs Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne says permanent residents in Wuhan will be allowed to return to Canada if they are the primary caregivers of Canadian children so that families can stay together.

A chartered plane will soon be in Hanoi, Vietnam waiting to pick up Canadian citizens from the quarantined region of China in response to the novel coronavirus outbreak.

The Canadian government is awaiting final approval from the Chinese government to fly through the restricted airspace and land at the closed airport in Wuhan.

Federal officials will be contacting Canadians in Wuhan later Monday to share the details of the plan to extricate them the epicentre of the outbreak.

Federal Health Minister Patty Hajdu says 304 Canadians have asked for assistance to return home but only 280 have Canadian passports — though the numbers remain fluid.

Hajdu says China will not allow anyone who is showing symptoms of coronavirus to board a flight to leave the country — even if they are Canadian citizens.